Twitter has just launched a new system called Twitter Coupons, which places Buy buttons inside Tweets, inviting users to take advantage of offers that can be redeemed at a later date at a bricks and mortar store. This offers traditional retailers a rare opportunity to compete for the funds of price-conscious bargain hunters who love to frequent online coupon and discount code websites as a part of their daily routines.
This innovative new system makes it possible for users to claim discounts, including money off and cashback, from within Twitter. They enter their credit card details inside Twitter to claim the offer, and then when they spend at the store in question using that card the discount will be applied. In the case of cashback, it may take a couple of days for the refund to appear on their statements.
Twitter Coupons is a great innovation that gives bricks and mortar brand owners a chance to increase their footfall using social media. Shoppers love coupons, but requiring users to print out a coupon to take to a store is simply too much friction. It is a lot easier for shoppers to enter card details – something that they probably do several times a day online anyway.
Some critics have expressed concern that by making it seem normal for Tweets to send users to pages asking for credit card details, the social network is increasing the risk of users falling victim to phishing scams or fraud. While this could happen, users can protect themselves by only engaging with verified brands in this way. There is always the possibility that Twitter could roll out a mobile payment option eventually, moving away from the archaic idea of using cards. Currently, the new coupon feature is available only in the USA and only for a limited number of brands. It is likely that this will change if the scheme is successful, with other English speaking territories naturally being the first to benefit.
Brand owners can get a lot out of the coupon system, not just in terms of how they engage with their consumers, but also get some valuable metrics regarding how many people are taking advantage of the offers. Given the usual difficulty of tracking cross-channel marketing, Twitter’s offering is something that any SEO agency in the UK working with offline brands will find hugely beneficial in the future.